Young Dolph Shooting: Federal and local authorities arrest 2 men in connection with deadly shooting of rapper

The rapper, whose real name is Adolph Robert Thornton, Jr. was fatally shot at Makeda’s Homemade Butter Cookies in Memphis on November 17, 2021. The 36-year-old leaves behind two children.

Justin Johnson, 23, was arrested in Indiana on Tuesday by the US Marshal Service, according to a federal agency press release. He was wanted for first degree murder. The US Marshals Service, the Memphis Police Department, Crime Stoppers and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation previously offered a reward of up to $15,000 for information leading to Johnson’s arrest.

Justin Johnson

Johnson is also a rapper who goes by the name Straight Drop. A press conference will be held on Wednesday where authorities can provide more information about Johnson’s arrest.

Cornelius Smith, 32, is the other man arrested in connection with the death of Young Dolph. Smith was arrested Dec. 9 in Southaven, about 340 miles northeast of Memphis, on a car theft warrant related to the white Mercedes Benz used in the Young Dolph shooting, according to a press release from the Shelby County District Attorney General’s Office.

Authorities discovered that the vehicle had been stolen in a carjacking on Nov. 10. The vehicle was then found on Nov. 20 following a tip that the vehicle had been abandoned shortly after Young Dolph’s murder three days earlier, the release said.

Smith was charged Tuesday with first-degree murder, as well as on additional counts of attempted first-degree murder, convicted felon in possession of a firearm, use of a firearm in the commission of a dangerous crime and theft of property over $ 10,000, the release said. The charge of attempted murder comes from Young Dolph’s brother, who was with the rapper at the time of his death.

Smith was in custody at the DeSoto County Jail, but was extradited Tuesday and transferred to Shelby County Jail.

CNN was unable to immediately determine whether Cornelius Smith or Justin Johnson sought legal advice.


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